Should You Be Loud Budgeting? What to Know About the TikTok Money Trend

A person with a megaphone shouts things about money.
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Saving up for a house down payment or a vacation, paying down debt, establishing an emergency fund — these are all worthwhile financial goals. But it’s challenging to make progress when friends routinely ask you to join them for an expensive night out and family members invite you to birthday parties and potlucks every other weekend. Enter loud budgeting.

Loud budgeting is a new TikTok trend that emerged in 2024. It’s about empowering people to be vocal about their financial goals — and feel no shame in turning down invites.

Never heard of loud budgeting? We’ll explore how this TikTok finance trend works below. We’ll also offer some loud budgeting tips and other ideas on ways to save money.

What Is Loud Budgeting?

Loud budgeting is a new money-saving concept made popular on TikTok. Influencer Lukas Battle coined the term in a late December 2023 post that went viral, where he said he was introducing the concept for 2024.

So what does it mean? At its core, loud budgeting means saying no to the social pressures of spending by vocalizing your financial goals. This includes when friends invite you to dinner or a group vacation, a family member invites you to go to their destination wedding or your parents ask you to take a costly flight home for the holidays. You simply say, “I have other financial priorities right now, so I won’t be joining.”

How Does Loud Budgeting Work?

Loud budgeting requires two components to be successful:

  1. You need to feel comfortable enough to talk openly about your financial goals with friends and family. It may feel awkward to say no when they ask you to join a social engagement that involves spending.
  2. You need to clearly determine your own financial goals and stick to them.

For instance, if you are focusing on aggressively paying off your student loans, it’s not enough simply to tell friends and family, “No, I can’t come to your dinner party.” You need to tell them why. Then, you make a plan for how you’ll pay off your student loans. You could use the money saved to make an extra principal-only payment each month.

Tips to Loud Budget Successfully

Loud budgeting is a simple concept, but it may be challenging to put it into place. Here are some tips to make the most of this TikTok trend.

1. Have Frank Discussions with Loved Ones First

When you decide to start loud budgeting, sit down with friends and family to let them know what your goals are. Be clear about why you’re reducing your spending and how they can support you.

Having an open, honest discussion now will make it easier the next time you get a text invite to go out for drinks or go to the movies. Because you’ve already had a discussion with the other person, a simple text response like, “Sorry, I can’t, I’m still focused on saving for my wedding!” should more than suffice.

2. Find Other Ways to Connect

Loud budgeting can lead to some serious FOMO. If all your friends are regularly hanging out without you, you might start to feel left out.

Instead, start suggesting free ways everyone can hang out. Host a game night (and ask that everyone eat beforehand), or meet up for a walk in the park. Suggest ditching gifts for the holiday season and instead focus on spending time together at home. If you can’t make a social event, ask the host to hang out another time to maintain your connection.

3. Use Other Budgeting Methods

The “loud” part of loud budgeting is about vocalizing your goals and feeling empowered to say no. But the other half of the concept — the budgeting part — requires that you have a plan in place.

Check out our budgeting resources to find a method that makes sense for you:

  • Try out one of these best budgeting apps that help you organize your spending.
  • See if another money trend, like the cash envelope system or the 50-20-30 rule, jives with your way of life.
  • Read budgeting tips that have worked for others with similar goals, and keep the conversation going with friends and family who are also focused on saving.

4. Don’t Forget to Treat Yourself

Budgeting is an important part of life. If you have important financial goals, like taking a family vacation, contributing to a 401(k) or starting a 529 plan for your kids, you’ll need to take budgeting seriously and make some concessions.

But that doesn’t mean you totally have to deprive yourself. Allow yourself the occasional indulgence — an ice cream with a friend, a weekend road trip to visit a family member or a nice birthday gift for a loved one. This way, you can stay connected with the people in your life and don’t risk getting burnt out and giving up on budgeting entirely.

Other Ways to Save Money

Loud budgeting focuses on saying no to the pressures of social spending. In essence, you’re cutting out on dining, entertainment, gifts and group vacations. But there are other ways to save money and meet your financial goals that can work hand-in-hand with loud budgeting, including:

  • Cutting other unnecessary expenses: You may still have some unnecessary expenses, even where friends and family aren’t involved. Cutting streaming services or impulse buys at the cash register, for instance, can help rein in your monthly spending.
  • Lowering your bills: Utility bills in particular can be a big source of spending. By making some simple changes around the house, you can likely reduce spending on natural gas, electricity and water. Here are a few ways to save money on utilities.
  • Asking for a raise or finding a new job: If it’s been a while since you’ve gotten a raise at work, there’s often no harm in asking. Make a compelling case for why you deserve the raise, and be prepared to find another job if it’s clear there’s no path forward for you at your current employer.
  • Get a side hustle: Alternatively, you can supplement your current income by trying out a side gig. For instance, if you work a traditional 9-to-5 and you’ll be cutting back on social events (because of loud budgeting), you can use some of your evening and weekend time to dedicate to one of these best side hustles for making extra cash.

Timothy Moore is a contributor at The Penny Hoarder who covers banking, loans, taxes and insurance. He’s written in the personal finance space for roughly a decade and has appeared on sites such as USA Today, Forbes, Lending Tree, LendEDU, Chime and SoFi.